Comelec cannot disqualify aspirants in barangay, SK polls for supposed link to illegal drug ops

MANILA, August 10, 2016--The Commission on Elections (Comelec) cannot disqualify aspirants in the upcoming Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) polls for their supposed link to illegal drug operations.

Comelec Chairman Andres Bautista said Tuesday such accusations are not grounds to exclude those who will file their Certificate of Candidacy (CoC).

"If these are merely allegations and accusations, then they are not grounds for disqualification,” Bautista said, noting that for a candidate to be disqualified to run for public office, he or she should have been sentenced by a court.

“Before you can be disqualified, there has to be final conviction and bears perpetual disqualification,” Bautista pointed out.

The filing of CoCs for the Oct. 31 polls will be from October 3 to 5.

Over the weekend, President Rodrigo R. Duterte identified more than 150 individuals for their alleged link to illegal drug operations.

Included in the list were officials of local governments, law enforcement agencies, and the judiciary. (PNA)